Heath went above Old Crossleyans into second place in Yorkshire One with a superb all-round effort in a 32-8 home win over Keighley yesterday.
Dave Harrison’s men were determined to secure a bonus point win against lowly opposition and while their strong pack were suited by the heavy conditions, they also played some good running rugby.
Seife Boussadda replaced the unavailable Lee Brown at second row and Richard Brown came in for club captain Ian Downsborough, who was on the bench alongside Michael Reynolds and Dave Skinner.
The lights were on from the start on a gloomy afternoon and rain also hampered play.
Heath pressed from the start, aided by astute kicking from Dan Cole. Ezra Hinchliffe opened the scoring with a penalty after five minutes but Keighley, after missing one shot at goal, drew level with a penalty on 10 minutes.
There was a period of even play before another superb kick from Cole found touch. Boussadda caught the ball and drove over the line for a try converted by Hinchliffe and a score of 10-3 after 20 minutes.
Heath were now controlling the game with Chris Moore, Alex McFadden and Richard Brown prominent. With the Keighley pack struggling, Jonny Cole and Jack Crabtree went close to adding to the score.
Heath became encamped in the visitors 22 and it came as no surprise to home supporters when the referee awarded a penalty try on 35 minutes to increase Heath’s lead to 17-3.
Conditions were deteriorating as the heavens opened but Heath kept the pressure on and Keighley were thankful for the half time whistle.
Heath continued to batter the visitors defence and following a scrum, Hinchliffe’s off-load to Isaiah Spooner saw the centre go over for an unconverted try.
Keighley managed to get hold of the ball and apply some pressure but when Jason Merrie and Peter Birkett linked well, Jonny Cole received the ball to turn defence into attack.
Keighley were making mistakes and Heath began to capitalise with Callum Harriett-Brown, Jonny Cole and Boussadda setting up Richard Brown to go over for the bonus point try on 65 minutes.
Keighley snatched a try to make it 27-8 but Heath responded with a well-worked score on 75 minutes. Olly Cook linked well with Chris Moore to release the backs in some entertaining play and Brown’s second try completed the scoring. Merrie was held up over the try line in the game’s final action and Heath now have only Moortown above them at the half-way point in their fixtures.